Managing director of The Shower Lab Max Finaldi talks about its latest product launches and how they will help fulfil its vision to be one of the most desirable shower screen manufacturers in the country
Having worked in the industry for the past 30 years, for the likes of West One Bathrooms and Just Add Water, Max Finaldi launched The Shower Lab in 2021.
The business was initially created to offer high quality made-to-measure shower spaces. However, it has also added standard size enclosures to allow the company to offer quicker delivery and more cost-effective solutions.
Most recently, it has focused on developing finishes and glass textures and laid out its vision to be one of the most desirable screen manufacturers in the UK.
We find out how The Shower Lab proposes to achieve this bold ambition.
Q: What level of the market are you looking to serve and who is your customer base?
A: We aim to serve independent bathroom retailers that want to offer a quality product that can be customised to suit different designs and situations.
Now offering 10 metal finishes and nine types of glass and profiles, it is possible to make every product unique.
Q: How do you differentiate your offering in a highly competitive market such as showering spaces?
A: Our View Refined collection and the newly introduced Portrait collection are designed from the ground up by our own inhouse designers.
Every detail is studied and perfected to create a product that will look good and last many years.
Customer service is also our top priority to give our partner showrooms a great experience as well as their own customers.
We’re moving in two directions, one where the product become bolder to show the finishes at their best but we also have a nearly invisible style within the View Refined for clients that love the minimalistic look.
Finishes are becoming a big part of our sales. We have already started offering Matt Bronze on all our View fixed panels and Portrait fully framed panels and sliders.
We will be introducing Polished and Brushed Gunmetal during 2023 and launching additional glazing in 2023 to complement all 10 finishes.
Q: How important is sustainability in the development of your business and products. Can you give an example of how this is reflected in your NPD or company?
Sustainability is one of four pillars and we have recently achieved IS04001 for environment management.
We are eliminating plastic from our own packaging and the Portrait panels will be our first products entirely packaged without the use of any plastic.
We have worked with a European company that produces patented cardboard corners and edge protectors.
In addition, we have installed light sensors all around our premises and recycle as much as possible and reuse all we can to eliminate excess waste.
Q: How are you managing supply and price inflation, while maintaining profit margins for your retail customers?
We stock all 10 metal finishes and 100s of standard sizes of enclosure for immediate despatch; we also guarantee five weeks delivery for bespoke shower spaces.
At the moment, at great sacrifice to the business, we are able to maintain our current prices.
It’s difficult to say what the next three to six months will bring, so we maintain a close eye on the exchange rates and to the general public sentiment.
Q: What is the size of your current showroom network and are you looking to increase this number?
A: We currently supply around 200 showrooms. We are always looking for high quality, well-run independent retailers that understand our products and the company ethos.
In exchange we will provide them with great marketing support, great products and outstanding customer service.
Our marketing department and PR partners always acknowledge and promote our showroom partners in all our social media Linkedin, Instagram and Facebook. We offer full training to all our showroom partners.
Q: What are the greatest challenges and opportunities for the business?
A: Supply issues will continue to be a challenge in the years to come. Fluctuations in the exchange rates and lack of fitters will all play a role.
Opportunities will come as we continue to invest heavily in R&D, marketing and by maintaining a professional attitude in the market.
Q: What are your ambitions for the brand will develop over the next couple of months/years?
Our vision is to be one of the most desirable shower screen manufacturers in the country.
We will deal with any new challenges with care and passion to deliver the best buying experience for our customers. We will aim to be the company by which others set their standards.